I hate sharing.
I hate it like I hate getting up at the crack of dawn.
I hate it like I hate cleaning.
The other day, my brother looked at me and said, “You’re really bad at sharing.”
And I said, “Huh, yeah I am.”
It’s totally true. When I was little, I used to sell sticks of gum to my siblings. “That’ll be 25 cents,” I’d say, and the little naive things would do it because they trusted me. The beginnings of my entrepreneurship stirred even as my parents swiftly ended my first venture.
When whoever I’m with orders something, I get excited because I expect to get a taste. When they assume the same, however, reaching over for my glass/mug/plate, I feel a bristling: Excuse me? Can you ask?, and I wonder where I get off.
~ ~ ~
I started making excuses for myself: It’s because my siblings broke everything when I was little! All my dolls were ruined! We had to fight for the yummiest of everything! I blame my childhood for my current state!
My mom even agreed with me, saying that’s probably where my penurious ways stem from. And I placate myself by saying that I give to my church, I even sponsor a child in India, for goodness sake!
But I have a hard time with the little things, like paying for someone’s coffee or ice cream or movie ticket. I never even THINK to offer these things, and I’m shocked when someone says to me, “Oh, I got this.” I wonder when they’ll expect me to pay them back, and I keep a tally in my head of how much I owe.
Generosity goes beyond money. Am I generous with my time? Yes, far more so than with my things. I am much more likely to make time in my week to see a friend than I am to buy someone a gift. You need help with something? I love helping. You want me to buy you gas? That one’s a little tougher.
I must be afraid of something. Afraid of being taken advantage of. Afraid of getting less than my share.
Maybe it’s about trust.
I want a generous spirit. I want to hold my hands open to those I love, as well as to my church and others in need. I’m sitting at a coffee shop right now, and I’m wondering why I didn’t offer to buy my friend’s coffee. Maybe that’s where it starts? Unsolicited moments of generosity.
Maybe you can train yourself to being generous?
Has someone ever taught you something about yourself? If it was a flaw, how are you working to grow?